The Eternal Present of Sport

Daniel Grano

6:00 p.m.  Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019

UNC Charlotte Center City

Daniel A. Grano is a professor of communication studies at UNC Charlotte and an affiliated faculty member of the University Writing Program. 

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The Eternal Present of Sport

From the opening kickoff in exhibition football season to a sudden death playoff at the Masters, sport arguably is America’s most popular past-time, not to mention a lucrative career for the elite athlete. And Personally Speaking kicks off its 10th season in September with a hard look at the sport-religion relationship.

The Eternal Present of Sport: Rethinking Sport and Religion (Temple University Press) considers the importance of religious images and ideas in contemporary sport controversies including performance enhancement, the head trauma crisis, and pay-for-play in collegiate athletics. Many people believe that sport is “religious” in that it provides an escape from politics. Author Daniel A. Grano argues instead that religion is a source of crisis and change in sport.

Please join Grano for the kickoff of the 2019-20 Personally Speaking, on Tuesday, Sept. 24, at UNC Charlotte Center City (320 E. 9th St., Charlotte 28202). This marks the 10th season in which UNC Charlotte’ s College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, in partnership with J. Murrey Atkins Library and UNC Charlotte Center City, has presented free public conversations between the community and its published scholars about their research and their books.

Doors will open at 6 p.m. with a reception and the program will begin promptly at 7 p.m. and will be followed by a dessert reception and book-signing. The series is open to the public without charge, but registration is required

RSVPs are required. Information about parking and other details will be emailed to those who register by 5:00 p.m. Monday, Sept. 23.

Grano asserts that it is precisely through sport’s highest religious ideals that controversies are taking shape and constituting points of political and social rupture. He examines issues of transcendence, “legacy” (e.g., “greatest ever,” or “all-time”) and “witnessing” through instant replay which undermines institutional authority. Grano also reflects on elite athletes representing especially powerful embodiments of religious and social conflict issues related to gender, sexuality, ability doping, traumatic brain injury, and institutional greed. 

The Eternal Presence of Sport received the Outstanding Book Award from the Communication and Sport Division of the National Communication Association.

Grano is a professor of communication studies. His work focuses on intersections between sport and politics with particular emphasis on health, the body, race, religion, and public memory.

For more information about the Personally Speaking series, please visit